Creative Laziness

Creative Laziness

Creative Laziness is not Laziness; it’s Avoiding Hard Work!

You must be surprised by the tittle of the blog “creative laziness”, must be. Because I thought all my blogs have been too serious, and I need a change of pace!   After all a blog on healthy living should be fun too.  Right?

`Avoiding Hard Work is not Laziness; it’s Creative Laziness!’  thinking about these words make me happy, don’t they make you happy? We have been told to work hard throughout our lives and this act of working hard end up making us miserable in the process.

I consider myself basically lazy, but my wife would say very lazy. When given the choice of doing something or doing nothing, I would always choose `doing nothing’, which is mostly the case. Just lazing around at home either watching TV or taking powernaps or reading a book.  Most of you would have the similar tendencies.

Dream Creative Laziness

Have you fantasised of lying on a hammock slung between two trees on the beach, with a fine breeze stroking you; just relaxing, daydreaming and dozing off when you feel like it?  Great!  you seem to be one of many who share my laziness.

So, the GOOD NEWS for you is that, being lazy is not as bad as we are made to believe, and hard work is not as great as we think.This is not just my viewpoint.  Let me tell you what some famous people have said about laziness.

  • Dr Lin Yutang wrote a book entitled `The Importance of Living’ back in 1937 and in it a chapter was devoted to `The Art of Doing Nothing’.   In this chapter he describes that “the highest wisdom of living by alternating between the absolutely erect vertical working posture and the horizontal posture of stretching ourselves on a sofa.”
  • The greatest detective story writer Agatha Christiesays: “I don’t think necessity is the mother of invention. Invention, in my view, arises right away from idleness, possibly laziness, to prevent myself trouble” is more appropriate definition of Laziness.

I believe that she has a very valid point, hasn’t she?  Because the lazy person who did not want to walk would think creatively of a way to avoid walking and thus invents a horse-carriage, a bicycle or a car.   Every entrepreneur is fundamentally lazy, because he wants more time for golf and other hobbies, so he starts a business.   He invents creative ways of leveraging on his employees, which allows the business to run while he is at the golf course.

Laziness to Success

Fred Gratzon, who wrote a book called ‘The Lazy Way to Success’ describes himself as an entrepreneur who hates hard work. Two of his companies made Inc. Magazine’s list of the 500 fastest growing companies in America as they grew like Jack’s beanstalk.  One of those businesses appeared three times and was ranked 2th. 

He said: “My next company began as a one-man start-up and when it was nine years old had grown to employing 1100 and grossing over $300 million in annual sales. I took that company public.  Let me reiterate. I never did any work.  No hard work.  No soft work.  Not even smart work.  Work was never necessary.”

His favourite piece of furniture is a hammock (see his book cover) – he owns several Mexican hammocks.  Siesta time!

Hard work or Laziness

Work hard for success is all we hear all our lives from our parents, our teachers, our politicians etc..  What are they all talking about? Advocating laziness and avoiding hard work? Who is right? Let’s dissect it and have a closer look.

Let us look at my definition of hard work.  According to me Hard Work is when you force yourself to do something that you don’t enjoy doing, something you don’t want to do, and even positively hate to do. Like cleaning the house, cooking, your job are few examples. Most of us normally say, I work hard for the money and Thank God It’s Friday is very common morning greetings in corporate world.

When we have stay back late at work for some preparation for the meeting next morning, we say `I worked hard until 9 pm to finish the presentation for the meeting.’   But we would never complain when on night out on Friday night saying, ‘I had to work hard last Friday night, drinking and dancing and talking to my friends until 3 am at the nightclub.’ Or ‘It was hard work watching World Cup Football at friend’s until 5am.’

Enjoy what you do

What I’m trying to point out is that when we ENJOY what we do, or like it, or have a big purpose we want to achieve, all the effort we put in doesn’t seem hard work at all, it either feel easy or simple.

Do you think Edison went to his lab in the morning the way most of us go to work, “Oh my God, why do I have to go to the lab again this morning?  Wonder whether the electric bulb will work today.  I’m sick of all the failures.” Or thinking of taking another purposeful action? I bet he would be excited about inventing a working electric bulb – so he took purposeful action.  He must have missed his dinner serval times and worked until midnight, but he would have never thought of it as hard work.

Imagine you are in a boarding school and the warden made you come out into the yard at noon on a hot summer day and made you run end to end, and side to side of the football ground for an  hour, only allowing you to have only one drink break.  Wouldn’t you say that it was a proper torture.


But this is exactly what me and my friend Jordan used to do, by choice, when we used to play for the state basketball team. In summers when school finished, we would go to the court instead of going home to practice. Sometimes it would rain, or it would be so hot that the court would be like hot plate. But we would not give up. We would wait until the court dried up or cool down a bit so that we are able to step on it. We used to love the smell of hot concrete surface of the court.

So, there we were with the blazing Indian sun beating down on us while the heat from the concrete rose up from the court, instant sauna. But we continued to play for hours, had a shower and then went home. Time used to fly, hours passed like minutes, but we didn’t complain at all.  However, if we had to run an errand for the parents, we would complain about the weather being too hot.  I’m sure you all can relate with me.

Let me conclude what I have been trying to say in the below quote by Floyd Dell.

“Idleness is not doing nothing. Idleness is being free to do anything.”

For us to do things we love the most, we must use our creative laziness to find ways of doing more with less effort i.e. by finding creative ways of avoiding hard work.

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